Las Vegas Sun

August 22, 2017

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Realtor group on Legislature: ‘Good session’ for homeowners

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Chris Kudialis

Members of the Nevada Senate convene a session in the Senate Chambers in Carson City on Friday June 2, 2017.

Homeowners generally fared well during the 2017 session of the Nevada Legislature, according to the Nevada Association of Realtors (NVAR).

Among the bills the group cited as beneficial were:

•    Senate Bill 33, which became law May 29, protects members of the military from losing their homes to foreclosure, including by a homeowners association, while on active duty.

•      Senate Bill 490, pending approval by Gov. Brian Sandoval, would extend the state’s Foreclosure Mediation Program, which is scheduled to sunset on June 30. The bill also requires Home Means Nevada Inc. to administer the program, instead of the Nevada Supreme Court.

•      Assembly Bill 161, which takes effect July 1, helps combat squatters, who often produce falsified rental documents when confronted by police officers trying to remove them from a home they are occupying illegally, an NVAR spokesman said. The new law protects legitimate tenants with a lease signed by a permitted property manager. The law requires a disclosure on rental agreements that creates a “rebuttable presumption” that the tenant does not have the right to live in a property if they can’t produce a rental agreement that has been notarized.

•      Senate Bill 255, which takes effect July 1, allows homeowners to cancel a contract to buy a property within an HOA via email after they have reviewed a package of documents provided by the HOA.

“The legislative process is never pretty,” said NVAR President Greg Martin, a longtime Realtor based in Reno. “But thanks in part to the NVAR and our work with state lawmakers, Nevada consumers and homeowners had a pretty good session. The same could also be said for our members.”

Martin said he expected lawmakers to pass legislation to reform property taxes, but their only action was to pass Senate Joint Resolution 14. The resolution, which also must be approved by the 2019 Legislature, would amend the Nevada Constitution to reset depreciation and tax caps when a property transfers to a new owner.

“We would have liked to see the Legislature approve a property tax study, but that didn’t happen,” Martin said. “I guess the good news is that property taxes weren’t increased.”

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